- The Tuolumne River offers many rafting, kayaking, hiking, fishing, wildlife viewing, and camping opportunities. The river features technical Class IV and V rapids with names like "Nemesis", "Thread-The-Needle" and "Pinball." The best time to float the Tuolumne River is usually May through September. High flows in the spring can make trips risky, especially for the inexperienced rafter. Commercial outfitters operate within a permit system under which the number of trips and passengers are limited.
In a further effort to protect the river resources and promote user safety, all noncommercial floaters were also required to obtain permits through the Stanislaus National Forest's Groveland Ranger District Office. However, visitors will not need a permit if they are rafting between October 1 and April 30. Rafters taking trips during the off-season are still encouraged to call the Groveland office for the latest weather, stream flow and safety information. For taped information on flow levels, call (916) 653-9647. Twelve undeveloped campsites are available along the river to noncommercial rafters on a first-come, first-served basis.
The Tuolumne flows through Yosemite National Park in east central California. To reach the river, take Highway 49 south from Sonora to Highway 120. Go east past Groveland about 7.5 miles to Ferreti Road to Lumsden Road to Lumsden campground
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